21 Jan 08
A point to consider, from a friend and Operator currently deployed overseas:
“Over here, we regularly use both Aimpoints and EOTechs, to great effect! We like 1X optics, because they are fast, and we can see so much around the aiming point. However, I teach all my teammates with optic-equipped rifles, to still keep their backup-up iron sights (BUIS), both front and rear, up and deployed all the time!
In fact, we have little use here for any species of fold-down sights. They will always be folded down and unusable when you desperately need them. With iron sights always deployed, when the illuminated reticle on your optic goes south, all you have to do is drop your eye a quarter of an inch, pick up your iron sights, and continue to engage as if nothing had happened. The transition requires no hand motion, and can be accomplished instantly. The move, of course, needs to be practiced regularly.
I submit that ‘full-time’ iron-sights, as a complement to your 1X optic, is the best way to go!”
Comment: My friend’s comments are, as always, founded on extensive operational experience. However, with rifles other than the AR-15/M-4, flip-up iron sights may be the only BUIS available. And, when they are always up (deployed), they are in danger of their being broken off. They are far more durable when folded down and out of the way.
The issue of the “clutter” contributed by always-deployed BUIS is one that I suspect is highly individual. As one who is poor at multi-tasking, I don’t like clutter in my optic. Stadia lines, range-estimation aids, stock-quotations, and everything else incorporated into rifle optics these days are counter-productive, as least for me, when I’m trying to concentrate only on my aiming point.
Based on my friend’s advice, I’m going to drill both ways. Depending upon the equipment we’re using, we will all have to be well practiced in instantly switching from electronic reticle to deployed BUIS. We may also have to be adept of instantly deploying flip-up sights that are normally folded down!
2 Jan 08
This is old news to many of us, but it is still critical for every Glock owner:
“John, I had a disconcerting moment at the range today. I attempted to fire my G19, which I just acquired, used, from another LEO. It went “click,” but it wouldn’t fire! I bought the gun several days ago used and, at that time, it appeared to function normally. Not today! Today, it was a good deal colder than when I first test-fired the pistol, and that should have been a hint!
When examining the recalcitrant rounds, I noticed that the striker was leaving only shallow and unconvincing dents on the primers. I have seen this problem before, and, in every case, the culprit was a striker-channel and spring that are gummed up with green-colored gunk. This is usually caused by owners who generously (and repeatedly) ‘lubricate’ the striker-channel, spring, and striker itself, in direct contradiction to Glock’s literature which advises to keep the channel bone-dry.
When our armorer broke the weapon down all the way, that is exactly what we found! Shame on me for not asking our armorer to break it down an inspect it first thing. Once the striker-channel, striker, and spring were all clean and dry, the pistol fired normally, even in the cold, with nary a hiccup.”
Comment: Advice to used-gun buyers: Spend the time and money to have a armorer/gunsmith detail dissemble your new acquisition and inspect/clean/adjust/replace parts, as necessary, BEFORE putting the weapon into serious service. Glocks are normally extremely reliable, but even they have issues, as we see.
“‘Luck’ is merely probability, taken personally.”
3 Jan 08
Comments on 1X optics:
I am persuaded that a military rifle, equipped with 1X optics, forward mounted, makes an excellent compromise for the independent rifleman and general, defensive purposes. That is the way most of my serious rifles are now set up. Specialized purposes may be served by magnifying optics, but seeing “a-lot-of-a-little” comes at a price!
I find EOTechs and Aimpoints to both be acceptable, but neither is perfect. Here are some “imperfections” that are curable, and a few that are probably not, from my own experience and contributed by a host of colleagues and friends:
(1) Loose mounts: Legion are complaints about optics coming loose and falling off rifles upon which they were thought to be securely mounted. Best to have a gunsmith install the optic and lock-tight it down. Even that is no guarantee, but “finger-tight” screws will not stay tight for long!
(2) Be able to get rid of the optic, fast: Optics are best mounted on quick-release bases, so that you can get them off your rifle and out of your life in an instant. When your optic cracks or frosts-over, you need to be able quickly get it off your rifle, so you can default to your BUIS. Mark LaRue makes, by far, the best quick-release mounts. Highly recommended, but Mark’s bases need to be firmly affixed, or they’ll come loose just like any other!
(3) Battery life: Aimpoint has an advantage here, as it consumes only a minuscule fraction of the power required by EOTech. Aimpoint users should replace batteries once a year, just to play it safe, but it is probably not necessary any more frequently than every five years. The aiming dot is always “on.” In fact, turning it off is contra-indicated. It just stays “on,” and will be there when you need it.
EOTech’s power supply needs to be much more closely monitored, and batteries replaced much more often. The illuminated reticle turns itself off automatically after four or eight hours, to conserve power. That feature is both good and bad. Battery life is extended, but the unit may turn itself off at an inconvenient moment! My advice to students is to adjust reticle brightness no less often than once per hour when in the field. That will reset the turn-off clock and keep the system “on” while the rifle is being carried. The practice constantly assures the active Operator that his EOTech is “on.” Springs in EOTech’s battery compartment can fall out without you noticing. A hint will be intermittent power! Fortunately, newer EOTech versions have now largely eliminated this issue.
(4) Too much clutter, too bright: EOTech’s 65MOA circle and central aiming dot (four dots on some models) is difficult to see past when brightness is set too high. Aimpoints and some models of EOTech have only one, central aiming dot, and that is what I prefer. That way, when reticle brightness is set too high, the optic is still useable, and you find yourself adjusting brightness a good deal less often.
(5) Anti-Reflection Device (ARD): This is a cover that fits over the objective lens in order to cut down on the optic’s downrange glare signature. However, with a copy installed, it is extremely difficult to pick up your front sight, rendering your BUIS all but unusable.
(6) Forward-mounting: Get the optic out of your face! Neither Aimpoint nor EOTech are eye-relief critical, and my preference is to mount the optic well forward on the rifle’s forend, giving me a minimum of thirty centimeters of eye-relief. That way, when the rifle is mounted, I can, of course, sight through the optic, but I can also SEE AROUND it! With close eye-relief, the optic becomes your whole world. Not recommended!
1X illuminated optics are here to stay, and offer serious riflemen significant advantages. Keep the foregoing in mind, and your optic will serve you well.
4 Jan 08
Another ND! Damage limited by Safe Direction:
“John, very glad you introduced me to Safe Direction pads!
My father, retired from the USAF as an E-8 in 1974, was handling my Taurus 1911 yesterday. I had given him a Safe Direction pad and instructed him in its use, and I insisted he use it! Good thing!
He was checking the Taurus before going to the range. Assuming it was unloaded, he put the muzzle against the Safe Direction pad, and pulled the trigger in order to ‘confirm’ the pistol’s condition. He was eminently successful! The pistol discharged once, and he was so startled that he pressed the trigger a second time. The pistol, once again, functioned normally! Ammunition was Hornady 230gr JHP+P TAP. After the two NDs, he finally got control of himself and unloaded the pistol.
Total damage: Startled and unhappy wife! Ears ringing! However, no damage to home, furniture, nor neighborhood. No police involvement. Safe Direction pad functioned as advertised! Both bullets, completely flattened, were stopped and contained therein.
Dad is today being recalibrated on ‘assumptions’ and guns, and we have a new Safe Direction pad on order!”
Comment: We’ve all heard about these unhappy episodes. They happen every day! The cause is always the confluence of (1) Exhaustion, (2) Distraction, and (3) Poor Procedure. We are also reminded by the foregoing that the time you are most likely to experience an ND is within two seconds of your last ND! NDs tend to come in pairs, sometimes in multiples.
Safe Direction pads are an integral part of every professional gunman’s ensemble. They are, in fact, highly recommended for every gun owner, professional or otherwise. I know many of us naively believe we would never be “that stupid.” Dream on!
5 Jan 08
Taser use in the Big City. This from an LEO with a large, metro area on the West Coast:
“On New Years Eve, one of our Gang Units spotted a wanted suspect. A foot-pursuit through our worst housing project immediately ensued. The suspect jumped into a car full of female ‘friends and relatives’ and tried to escape. However, we were successful in blocking in the suspect vehicle.
Our officers pulled the recalcitrant suspect from the car, but he was swinging widely and trying to break away. Three females came right out with him, all also actively combative. In addition, several denizens of the projects suddenly showed up, verbally pugnacious and threatening, and ostensibly ready to come to the aid of the suspect.
Out came our Tasers! We straightaway tased the suspect and three of the women. All four went down instantly. All of a sudden: silence! What started as a potentially big fight abruptly ended before reaching critical mass!
The fourth female meekly indicated she didn’t want to fight after all, and the group of angry bystanders, who were only too anxious to become physically involved moments before, all simultaneously found something else to do! They quietly backed away and disbursed, wanting nothing further to do with their friend, nor us.
Suspects were all taken into custody and whisked away without additional incident. What could have been a localized riot, ended in a fizzle.
We love our Tasers!”
Comment: Tasers just work too well not to be universally issued to patrol officers! Most of the “controversy” surrounding them is pure wind and has been manufactured by agenda-driven VBCs, who have historically hated police and every article of equipment we have, or have ever had.
7 Jan 08
Barbary Wars and the United States Marine Corps:
George Washington, even before he was president, lobbied heavily for a full-time, standing, Federal Army. In 1792, a distrustful Congress gave him and his successors, instead, the Uniform Militia Act, which involuntarily inducts every able-bodied male, in all states, between the ages of eighteen and forty-five, into his State’s “Militia,” which can be subsequently “Federalized” under certain emergency circumstances. There is provision for neither arming nor equipping this Militia, and each of its inductees is therefore expected to present himself for duty, when called, armed with personally-owned, military weapons. It is indeed this “Militia” that was referenced in the Second Amendment to the Constitution (ratified in 1789) and was herein finally and officially defined by Congress, and that has been endlessly contended ever since, right up to the present.
The “Barbary Pirates” of the late 1700s were actually the “Navy” of Algiers, Tunis, Tripoli, and several other North African city/states, descendants of Islamic Moors who had invaded, and subsequently been thrown out of the nominally Christian Iberian Peninsula. They freely and brutally victimized commercial shipping, of all nationalities, as it entered and exited the Mediterranean through the Straits of Gibraltar. Their favorite tactic was to sweep alongside a vessel and drop a sail over its rail, locking the two ships together. Then, heavily-armed pirates would swarm onto the victim ship, quickly neutralizing resistance. Captives were either murdered on the spot or spent the short remainder of their lives as slaves in African gravel pits. Lucky ones were held, in some semblance of comfort, for ransom. The young American commercial fleet, eager to become involved in world trade, found itself victimized on a regular basis, so much so, that piracy began to cripple the fledgling American economy.
In fact, this African pirates’ seizure tactic so impressed Samuel Nicholas, a prominent and well-connected Philadelphian, that he persuaded the Continental Congress to direct him to raise two battalions of infantry trained to fight aboard ship. These “Soldiers of the Sea” were to man the new fleet of warships being hastily constructed. A popular and notorious local watering hole, Tun Tavern, was selected as an extemporaneous base of operations, and Sam started actively recruiting there on 10 Nov 1775. So long as they were at sea, Congress didn’t consider them a threat. It was the inception of the United Sates Marine Corps, and that date is still celebrated today by all Marines, no matter where we are! Nicholas became the first “Commandant.”
The period in question spanned three administrations: Washington’s, Adams’, and Jefferson’s. All three presidents had their hands full! There was the pressing issue of attacks by British-incited and armed Indians of frontier settlements in the Northwest Territories. In fact, the Revolutionary War with England never really ended until 1818, when Andrew Jackson executed two British nationals in Florida who were inciting local Seminoles. There was also the short-lived “Whisky Rebellion,” and the equally short-lived “Shays’ Rebellion.” The smart money was not on the USA surviving for long as an independent nation, particularly with its fractured, dyspeptic, chaotic form of government, and a “president” whose powers were poorly defined and endlessly disputed.
In an effort to secure the release of American hostages, held in Algiers since 1785, the Washington Administration, over the objection of Jefferson and many others, unwisely took the expedient route and agreed to pay ransom, in the form of cash and arms, to the current head Algerian warlord/thug (called the “Dey”). As is always the case, the moment you agree to pay extortion (what was called “Dane-Geld” by the British) extortionists everywhere will smell blood, and that is exactly what happened. In fact, as news of this easy score spread, even the French had the audacity to hit us up for a bribe or two!
Accordingly, the “Bashaw” (chief thug) of Tripoli, Yusuf Karamanli, was not about to be excluded from America’s foolish largess! Karamanli, in his lust for power, murdered one brother and blackballed another. The cheated brother, Hamet, in an effort to reclaim the throne he contended was rightfully his, would become an ally of the United States, albeit briefly. He would be subsequently shamefully betrayed by the young nation he had naively trusted.
When Jefferson took office in 1801, he had no particular reputation as a fighter, and Karamanli took him for a pushover. It was a poor call on Karamanli’s part! Jefferson decided to blockade Tripoli with every ship he could send. When one, the Philadelphia, ran aground and was captured by Karamanli’s men, a heroic American naval officer, Stephen Decatur, recaptured and burned it. Tripoli was then unmercifully shelled into submission.
Simultaneously, William Eaton, an American living in Tunis, put together a diverse group of fighters, including eight US Marines under the command of an audacious Virginian, Lt Presley O’Bannon, landed in Egypt, marched undetected over four-hundred miles of desert, and attacked the City of Derna, a suburb of Tripoli (present-day Libya). It was an impossible, unwinnable battle that was won anyway, mostly through shear determination. With Eaton and O’Bannon was Karamanli’s estranged brother, Hamet.
Upon hearing the news from Derna, the Bashaw was further traumatized and meekly sued for peace. Naive American negotiators, anxious to end the whole affair quickly, made a hash of subsequent discussions and produced a fatally flawed agreement which demanded nearly nothing from the vanquished Bashaw, save the release of the captured Philadelphia’s crew. Hamet never got his throne back, although he had been promised it by Eaton, and, by extension, the United States.
By the time he found out about the bungled agreement, it was too late for Jefferson to change it, and the unsavory stain remained with Jefferson and his administration, tormenting him until his death.
Hamet was, however, unabashedly grateful to an heroic and unswerving Lt O’Bannon. Upon their parting, he presented O’Bannon with his “Mameluke” sword (the “Mamelukes” were Asian mercenaries, recruited to fight with the Egyptians in their conquest of Palestine in the 1200s). The unique Mameluke hilt is found on the ceremonial sword issued to every US Marine second lieutenant ever since. Mine is among my most prized possessions, as it carries me back to these heroic times!
Lessons: “All this by mighty deeds is done. All this by patient hearts is born. And, they by whom the laurel’s won are seldom they by whom it’s worn”
Great victories are won by mighty warriors through superiority of will and superiority of purpose, only to be undervalued and frittered away by self-serving politicians who contribute nothing but gas!
Even now, freedom-loving multitudes everywhere, straining under the bonds of local tyranny, hesitate to throw in with the United States, because we have abandoned so many brave allies, starting with a trusting Hamet Karamanli, shamefully selling them down the river, all for political expediency, the most contemptible of all unworthy motives.
9 Jan 09
All I’ve heard today from assorted pundits is the hand-wringing question, “How could pollsters have been so wrong about the outcome of yesterday’s NH Primary?” Unintentionally, they’ve struck at the central flaw in modern, Western Civilization: WE HAVE LOST OUR REVERENCE FOR TRUTH!
Pollsters weren’t “wrong.” They were corrupt and dishonest! Pollsters, “researchers,” and others who try to make a living from advising candidates and others who have a direct interest in the outcome of elections are far more interested in telling a candidate what he wants to hear than they are in telling him what he needs to know. On the other side of the equation, the willfully naive are interested in paying exorbitant fees only for good news. They are not anxious to pay for bad news. “Information” is “information,” and, true or false, it is all considered of equal value by adolescent twirps who run today’s information industry.
Thus, modern-day “researchers” make sure their “investigation” only leads to “conclusions” whoever is writing checks wants to hear! This “agenda-driven research” is not science at all. It is a fraud, and that term shamefully applies to much of what is reported by today’s media as “news” and “facts.”
When you get your suppositions and conclusions mixed in with each other at the beginning, any “conclusion” you reach is rubbish, and should be contemptuously regarded as such! Yet, today, you will not be consulted, nor will you have any hope of grant money, unless you agree, in advance, to “conclude” whatever the party-line dictates! This casual disregard for truth has cast an indelible stain upon much of what today has the audacity to call itself “research” and “science,” particularly when regurgitated by the government and the Pentagon.
Once again, as our Civilization declines, we find ourselves wallowing in a kind of Eastern Mysticism, where only political agendas count, and truth holds no special place but is routinely mixed together with lies and error. We’ve created a patently fraudulent, but unchallenged, political orthodoxy within which people have convinced themselves that the laws of the universe don’t apply to them, and we dutifully protect them from the logical consequences of their arrogant stupidity. That all “works,” of course, until the Visigoths show up!
Those of us who notice this trend are not the first. Some dire warnings from the past:
“Humanity strives to find truth. It relaxes when it has found an error that is livable”
“A belief is not ‘true’ merely because it is useful”
“A thing is not ‘proved’ simply because no one has ever questioned it”
“The fact that an opinion is widely held is no evidence that it is not utterly absurd; indeed, in view of the silliness of the majority of mankind, a widespread belief is more likely to be ridiculous than sound!”
10 Jan 08
This is a “security trigger” add-on for Glocks. It entirely replaces the original trigger with one with an integral, cross-bolt safety button. It is ostensibly being marketed in order to make the Glock pistol “safer.”
“Safer” than what? How “safe” do guns have to be?
There have been any number of these after-market, manual-safety add-ons produced for Glocks over the last two decades. We see them in Classes from time to time. None work well, and we’ve broken several. None are recommended. If your pistol must have a manual safety, you need to look at one that was designed that way from the beginning, like a 1911, the Taurus 24/7, or Ruger’s new SR9.
We’ll apparently see this latest attempt to make Glocks “safer” at this year’s SHOT Show in Las Vegas.
Another money-transfer device for idiots!
11 Jan 08
Excellent comments from an Instructor:
“Virtually every fire extinguisher currently manufactured works exactly the same; the inexpensive one in my kitchen, and the professional model carried on fire trucks. They’re all simple to operate, so there is actually some possibility ordinary people, in a panicked state, will be able to make them work in a beneficial way, and in time for it to do some good. They are designed to be used in an emergency, so they don’t come with combination locks nor a tedious, six-step, sequence-critical procedure necessary to get them running!
Thank heaven some audacious gun-makers still build handguns in this same spirit. Others display infinitely more dread for the life-saving device they themselves manufacture, than they do for life-threatening event it is created to stop!
We think the foregoing is funny, but, for example, how am I supposed to look upon the credibility and sincerity of a manufacturer of ostensibly defensive pistols who states in the very literature that is supplied with each copy of his product:
‘Keep this pistol unloaded at all times… Keep this pistol inaccessible at all times… Never load this pistol at all, until just before you intend to shoot, and unload it immediately after shooting….. ad nauseam?’
I get the distinct impression, they, like the politicians we all despise, couldn’t care less about my life, caring instead only about insulating themselves from litigation.
God forbid I actually use this pistol for its intended purpose!”
Comment: It would be a good deal more helpful, and infinitely less disingenuous, if, in their instructional manuals, manufacturers frankly and openly discussed how to correctly carry and handle a continuously loaded pistol, how to shoot VCAs in a way that ends the fight quickly and permanently, reasonable options for storing the pistol safely and yet in an adequate state of readiness, effectively interacting with the criminal/justice system in the aftermath of a defensive shooting, et al. That information would be genuinely helpful, but is all perpetually “subject-non-grata.” Writers of instructional manuals prefer instead to hypocritically dance around real issues.
Guns are dangerous! They have to be, or there would be scant point in ownership, much less in carrying one. Of course, “dangerous,” is a relative term. However, WHEN FIGHTING FOR MY LIFE, THE ONLY KIND OF GUN I WANT IS ONE THAT IS EXTREMELY DANGEROUS! The “extremely dangerous” gun I need at the critical moment is, of course, going to be “extremely dangerous” the rest of the day too, so I need to know how to carry, handle, and keep it correctly. That vital information should be supplied, in spades, by manufacturers, but rarely is.
A well-trained trigger finger, a clear mind, and a virtuous and courageous heart are as close to a “safety” as we’re ever likely to get. Who are missing any of the above are well advised to pass on gun ownership!
13 Jan 08
Comments on “Instructions for Use” manuals supplied with new pistols, from a friend with a large gun manufacturer:
“John, give us a break! Manuals that delicately skirt the ‘real’ intended uses of manufactured products are not unique to our industry. In fact, if you want a good laugh, look at the ones that come with ladders, ATVs, even vacuum cleaners. You and I would be rolling in dough if we had pioneered the ‘warning-label’ business thirty years ago!
Until this industry finds a way to shield ourselves from predatory, frivolous, preposterous lawsuits, I don’t see anything changing. Every year, we spend mortifying amounts of money dealing with idiot litigation. Most are dismissed. Some are settled. Only a minuscule few ever go to trail. But, in the lawsuit business, there isn’t much monetary difference between cases that are ‘won’ or ‘lost.’ Either way, we have to pay an army of lawyers obscene fees, because all cases, even the most stupid, must be taken seriously.
Bubba or Bubbette buys one of our guns, dips it in Vaseline, sticks it up their ass, and pulls the trigger. Without fail, their ‘estate’ subsequently sues us, because we didn’t specifically warn against that act in our manual! Again, we may be successful in getting the case laughed out of court, but it will cost us a fortune either way. We have dozens of these going at any one time!
In addition, we’re obligated to actively lobby against reams of new, unbelievably-stupid, proposed gun laws, at every level of government. An example (where we lost!) is CA’s new ‘firing-pin-has-to-transfer-the-serial-number-to-fired-cases’ law. CA, like NJ before it, has nonchalantly mandated a technology that does not exist. We have no idea if we will be able to comply, at any cost, and we’re disinclined to even try. We may well have to stop selling guns in CA!
Oh, how I would love to include in our Instructions for Use Manual a chapter on how to properly carry loaded pistols and how use our pistols to fatally shoot, deader than shit, burglary suspects in the process of invading your home! But, you, better than most, know what kind of screwed-up legal system we have to live with, and, in the process, do our best to make a living, pay our bills, meet our payroll, and maybe even design new products, in our spare time!
If we ever decide to throw caution to the wind and start writing real manuals, you’ll be the first one we’ll call. In the interim, John, don’t hold your breath!”
Comment: The United States is in the process of being de-industrialized. Over-regulated, over-snooped, over-taxed, over-litigated, and viciously vilified by politicians and the media alike, manufacturers are understandably throwing up their hands and moving operations off-shore, or closing their doors for good. Why is anyone surprised?
In another twenty years, we’re all going to be sitting around a table trying to sell each other insurance, because no one will be making anything!
16 Jan 08
6.8mm vs Wild Pigs!
Yesterday, here in Sunny south FL, I shot another wild pig with my Robinson Arms XCR in 6.8mm. The rifle has a forward-mounted Micro-Aimpoint, my Blue-Force Gear/Vickers sling, and I used Cor-Bon DPX ammunition.
Range was sixty meters. He was in tall grass, so I could only see the top of him. First round was high, because I made the mistake of aiming at the part I could see, not the center of the animal. The round passed through him, just above the spine. He started running, right-to-left. My Aimpoint was wonderful! I caught my link, tracked him into an open spot, held just below his chin, and pressed off my second shot. It hit low in the chest, blowing his heart to pieces, and exiting. The exit hole was an inch in diameter!
He ran for ten more meters, then turned around and ran back from where he had just come. His rapid change in direction caught me by surprise, and my third shot hit just behind him. He then tumbled and stopped. By the time we got to him five minutes later, he was DRT! He was a middle-aged male, one-hundred pounds.
Once again, the 6.8mm demonstrated itself more than a match for these south FL wild pigs! I’m more persuaded than ever that Aimpoint’s single aiming point is superior to other, more complicated, reticles. The XCR is a master system! DPX performs in spades!
19 Jan 08
Skulls and DPX
Yesterday, I was asked to put an injured cow, a 1,200 lb female, out of her misery. She had a broken back due to too-enthusiastic breeding attempts by several, large bulls. It happens on cattle ranches every now and then.
In any event, she was down, but too dangerous to approach. I had my XCR in 6.8mm, of course, so I was selected to do the job. At forty meters, I put the Aimpoint dot between her eyes and pressed off the shot. I had no idea how thick her skull was, but that was the way they wanted me to do it. The bullet hit her mid-skull, between the eyes.
The cow’s head dropped immediately. We approached, and I put on more shot into her head (a habit I picked up in Africa), but it was unnecessary. She was DRT.
The Cor-Bon DPX (Barnes) bullet had bored completely through her skull and made mush out of her brains. Once again, the performance of Barnes bullets was top-drawer. She never knew what
22 Jan 08
Miami, FL Gun Show:
I attended a large Gun Show in Miami last Sunday. It was big and extremely well attended.
What immediately garnered my attention was the fact that there were several, large, local gun retailers represented, all of whom had spacious and elaborate displays. Prominently exhibited were tables-full of 9mm and 40S&W, self-decocking (DAO), plastic-framed, concealment pistols manufactured by two companies that I had heretofore never heard of: Cobra and Skyy (like the Vodka). Cobra has arisen from the ashes of defunct “Jennings,” and Skyy Manufacturing is a break-away from Kel-Tec.
These pistols are priced under $300.00, and all the clerks I talked with indicated they were strong sellers. Others I talked with had nothing good to say about either brand. Up until now, most pistols in this price category have been in minor calibers. Not any more!
What struck me was that low-income gun buyers who are looking for legitimate, concealment pistols in serious calibers are being deliberately marketed to by these companies, and probably some others. I don’t think Glock, SIG, S&W, Beretta, H&K, nor Kahr need worry a great deal, at least for now, and I’ll probably not own a gun from either any time soon, but I’m astonished how quickly these new companies come into existence and get product to market. I was seeing and handling both brands for the first time.
I’m interested to see if either company will have a booth at the SHOT Show!
23 Jan 08
When radical ideologues seize power… This from friends in SA:
“As has already happened in Zimbabwe to the north, our ANC/Marxist government is not-so-subtly signaling that all whites will be now officially referred to as ‘foreign invaders,’ and can thus have their legally-owned land casually seized by the government, while being ‘compensated’ only what the government thinks the property is worth. Of course, the interminable ‘appeal-process’ is deliberately designed to bankrupt all who would foolishly try to hang on to their property.
I’m sure, not long after, we’ll see our own version of ‘Crystalnacht’ here, and all us unfortunate members of ‘inferior races’ will thereafter be required to wear arm bands. The inevitable “end” may well involve gulags and concentration camps!
In the interim, our government’s flaming incompetence is currently manifested in rolling blackouts, almost daily. We have a critical, electricity shortage and are regularly left in the dark, without warning.
And, our special police unit, Scorpions, that was created precisely to combat ‘official corruption’ has, as it turns out, done far too good a job! We call it “malicious competence!” They have identified and exposed sleazy malfeasance, and blatant abuse of power, at every level of government. Understandably, the current administration is desperately trying to disband them!”
Lesson: Marxists are the same everywhere! Racism is “bad,” except when it serves their purposes. Then, it is not only “good.” It is downright patriotic!
Marxism has miscarried everywhere it has been tried, bringing about only darkness and mass wretchedness. But, of course, power-mad Marxists don’t care, so long as they remain comfortably in charge. Seizing power and lording over disenfranchised peons is all that matters to them, and all that ever will!
World history is not “advancing.” We’re going backwards!
24 Jan 08
Signs of the times… from a friend just returning from overseas:
“If you can imagine a ‘New York City’ that really works. That is Shanghai! Local bureaucrats processed our entire party through security and immigration expediently and cheerfully. Smiles everywhere, and all spoke near-perfect English. They could not have been more helpful and were obviously glad to have us there!
Contrast that with Chicago, where I reentered the USA. Returning US Citizens were ‘greeted’ by bored, dour, unsmiling agents who, in addition to going about their duties in agonizing slow-motion, spoke ‘English’ so poorly that we had to ask them to repeat, multiple times, each question.
There were twelve kiosks. Only two were open. When, at long last, it was finally my turn, the agent started the conversation with, ‘I don’t really want to be here…,’ in broken English. Newly-arriving inmates at most Federal Prisons, I’m sure, receive a warmer welcome!
Since December, I’ve visited five, foreign countries. All have the security/immigration thing well in hand. They’re fast and efficient. Welcomes are invariably enthusiastic and sincere. Meanwhile, in the USA, we routinely delay the process to the point exasperation, thoughtlessly treating visitors, and our own citizens, like so much livestock!”
Comment: I wonder if agents described in the foregoing have any idea the irreparable damage they’re doing to the reputation of their agency and their Country!
The Ugly American should be a thing of the past. Apparently not. Americans in William Lederer’s 1958 landmark book, ugly though they may have been, could, at least, speak English!
25 Jan 08
M-16 magazines, a perennial issue… This from a friend in the rifle manufacturing business:
“Here at the factory test-range, we shoot hundreds of thousands of rounds every year. Even well-made aluminum magazines eventually flair-out at the top. At that point, they become scrap metal!
Our preference is stainless-steel magazines! Our favorite manufacturer is C-Products (www.cproductsllc.com). A steel magazine will last many times longer than those made of aluminum or plastic. Indeed, most plastic magazines split at the back (near the notch for the bolt hold-open) within five-thousand rounds.
Magpul claims their new plastic magazine adequately addresses all these issues. I sincerely hope they’re right!
6.8mmSPC magazines from C-Products are also stainless-steel, and will outlast most rifles they’re used in.”
Comment: Based on my friend’s sage advice, and in view of the fact that it is an election year, I’ve laid in a good supply!
27 Jan 08
It’s another election year, and politicians from both parties are, with nauseating predictability, assuring us that they are going to legislate all the uncertainties out of life, carelessly spending tax dollars to be collected from Americans who haven’t even been born yet! Even the labels, “Socialist” and “Marxist,” no longer carry with them the mantel of shame they used to.
Alexis de Tocqueville warned us:
“The dignity of man is not shattered in a single blow, but slowly softened, bent, and eventually neutered. Men are seldom forced to act, but are constantly restrained from acting. Such power does not destroy outright, but prevents genuine existence. It does not tyrannize immediately, but it dampens, weakens, and ultimately suffocates, until the entire population is reduced to nothing better than a flock of timid, uninspired animals, of which the government is shepherd.”
Yes, we’ve created an unchallenged political orthodoxy within which people have convinced themselves that the laws of the universe don’t apply to them, and mendacious politicians dutifully protect them from the logical consequences of their arrogant stupidity. This “works,” of course, right up to the time the Huns show up!
Then, Huns laugh, as the delusion collapses like a house of cards!
31 Jan 08
Warm comments from a student currently deployed overseas:
“I thank you for your instruction in the skills and philosophy of a warrior. I am aggressively passing this discipline on to my guys as fast as I can.
On numerous occasions now, I have personally found this to be true:
(1) When you make alertness a way of life:
(2) When you have critical issues worked out in advance and thus get on target smoothly, without wasted motions, and without hesitation,
(3) Move off the line of force,
(4) Aim precisely, and
(5) Press the trigger carefully,
(6) Catching the link without fail, and repeating as necessary,
(7) Never staying in one place too long
…you will quickly and decisively defeat each opponent and live through multiple confrontations.
By comparison, our opponents are generally ill-equipped and poorly trained. They are no match for us!”
Comment: Described above is the difference between a live professional and a dead amateur! Here is a seasoned and well-trained warrior… in action!